Here are 5 things that should clue you in that what you are about to do (or are doing) is shabby.
1. You feel the urgency to do something quickly more than the urgency to get it done correctly. This can include texting something that ought to be done with a phone call, saying something in a phone call that ought to be said in person, and saying something in person at a time or place that leaves the other person no chance to think or respond to the full weight of what you are saying.
2. You purposely avoid asking anyone for advice who might disagree with you. This includes people who have special knowledge about you and any particular subject that impacts the action you’re about to take.
3. You think of ways to keep people from knowing what you are about to do (doing). Creating an alias that no one knows is you, figuring out how to delete text and email threads and web search history, looking into security measures to guard your actions from scrutiny are all in this category, especially if you’ve never considered them before.
4. You have to pump yourself up with self-righteousness before you act. Listing reasons you are right and someone else is wrong or deserves something to happen is a tell tale sign of shabbiness.
5. You think about an exit strategy to get away from the scene. This is true if you’re robbing a bank or ditching on a friend.
If you are planning to take an action and any of these things are part of the run up to it, I suggest you take a step back and reconsider. You’re not a shabby person and you don’t want to treat other people in dishonoring ways. It makes the world a sucky place to live in. And just in case it occurs to you that someone writing an article like this must know a lot about doing shabby things…yeah. I’ve done all of them and none of them have left me with a lift in my spirit and most have produced bad results.